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Hardware Platform Nintendo 64 Vs. PlayStation: Which console was more innovative?

StateofMajora

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CD was dirt cheap in 96. Consumers could get sturdy featured 4x drives for $150, a company with connections buying in bulk would get much cheaper prices per drive. Like $60-70. $30 for 3x drives.
Whatever it would cost Ninty, it’s going to be more than carts. With spec upgrades, and a cd drive, it’s hard not to see the price going way up.

But again i’m glad they stuck with carts.
 

Eddie-Griffin

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What is this nonsense?

Thread is all over the place. People claiming the PS1 was the first console that used CDs and now the N64 controller doesn't have an analog stick.
Because it doesn't have an analog stick, it's a well engineered digital joystick (for gameplay not reliability) but it's not analog. Calling it such is what is nonsense.

You could do research on that but you likely want to double down on the wrong narrative instead.

But for the N64 games the stick works for the most part, but it's not true analog.
 
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nkarafo

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Because it doesn't have an analog stick, it's a well engineered digital joystick (for gameplay not reliability) but it's not analog. Calling it such is what is nonsense.

You could do research on that but you likely want to double down on the wrong narrative instead.

But for the N64 games the stick works for the most part, but it's not true analog.
Sources or bust.

Either way, it works as an analog, it allows for a wide range of speed so it's analog.
 
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StateofMajora

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It's hard to get both, tough :p
Yeah but the rambus ram in n64 had particularly high latency that all devs complained about, because it inherently had higher latency but also was in a weird configuration ; as per a boss games studio programmer. (world driver championship, top gear rally)

Meanwhile, PC graphics cards had 800mb/s bandwidth and with lower latency in 4gb configurations. No doubt it would have cost more though.
 
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Eddie-Griffin

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Whatever it would cost Ninty, it’s going to be more than carts. With spec upgrades, and a cd drive, it’s hard not to see the price going way up.

But again i’m glad they stuck with carts.
N64 architecture is a mess with the corner cutting done to get the machine out. They would need to modify the architecture for all those additions to work seemlessly, or they would end up like the Jaguar.

Even then that would only help the N64 slightly as third parties in the west outside a few had no interest in dealing with Nintendo, and now in Japan there were three other options (3DO, Sat, PS1) jp third parties didn't deal with them much either.

That's always going to be the main weakness of the N64. Third party support.
 
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Eddie-Griffin

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Sources or bust.

Either way, it works as an analog, it allows for a wide range of speed so it's analog.
No there is no either way, you even tripled down on your previous stance at the start of this quote.

What's concerning though is how fast you responded without doing research.
 
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StateofMajora

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N64 architecture is a mess with the corner cutting done to get the machine out. They would need to modify the architecture for all those additions to work seemlessly, or they would end up like the Jaguar.
Duh, the whole point of those additions is to make the architecture work best. Mess or no mess, it was a generation ahead of the competition in hardware feature set and it showed.

Third party support ran away primarily because of carts.
 

nkarafo

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What's concerning though is how fast you responded without doing research.
I played N64 games. The stick allows for a wide range of motion. That's what "analog" means in this case.

I don't know about the inner workings of the controller or how it's gears work or how it translates inputs to 0s and 1s. That's purely technical. In practice, the stick is analog.
 

Eddie-Griffin

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Duh, the whole point of those additions is to make the architecture work best. Mess or no mess, it was a generation ahead of the competition in hardware feature set and it showed.

Third party support ran away primarily because of carts.
No most third party support left because there was an option. Not carts. This is evident with Western devs very clearly. For jp devs you have to look at the domestic market, Genesis was a min factor and NEC was messing up by 1991. SNES it FM town pc were the rising stars.

Then suddenly 3DO comes out overseas and enters Japan later with a good chunk of third party support along with Saturn and PS1. It was over before the N64 came out.

SNES was still a big seller in Japan for a couple years, before the last delay N64 already had lack luster game sign ups.
 
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Eddie-Griffin

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I played N64 games. The stick allows for a wide range of motion. That's what "analog" means in this case.

I don't know about the inner workings of the controller or how it's gears work or how it translates inputs to 0s and 1s. That's purely technical. In practice, the stick is analog.

This case? Uh no that's not how this works. It's either analog or it's not. You moving the post to "I gotta believe" may work in parappa but not in real life.

I also already said for it's games (for the most part) the stick works. So it's a redundant segway you're making.

But it's not true analog. That's all I'm saying. It is digital
 

StateofMajora

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No most third party support left because there was an option. Not carts. This is evident with Western devs very clearly. For jp devs you have to look at the domestic market, Genesis was a min factor and NEC was messing up by 1991. SNES it FM town pc were the rising stars.

Then suddenly 3DO comes out overseas and enters Japan later with a good chunk of third party support along with Saturn and PS1. It was over before the N64 came out.

SNES was still a big seller in Japan for a couple years, before the last delay N64 already had lack luster game sign ups.
I’m not saying no support would jump ship to playstation if 64 had cd, but the famous losses like square enix were huge snd definitely because of carts.

With cd, third party support would be hugely better either way. A lot of devs just didn’t put their games on 64 because of the price of carts.

In the end, as a gamer that plays all machines, it worked out best that nintendo had carts because of the games that came out of that decision. N64 would have been inferior with cd, just with more 3rd party.

My biggest gripe with the 64 is the lack of a sound chip and that combined with carts really gave ps1 an advantage.
 
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SoulTas

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This case? Uh no that's not how this works. It's either analog or it's not. You moving the post to "I gotta believe" may work in parappa but not in real life.

I also already said for it's games (for the most part) the stick works. So it's a redundant segway you're making.

But it's not true analog. That's all I'm saying. It is digital
Everything about video games is digital. It's just 000111001000111.... you get the idea. So in a way every analog controller is digital in nature. But then you are missing the point.
 

Eddie-Griffin

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With cd, third party support would be hugely better either way.
Nope, this is something that has always been wrong. People really dont grasp Nintendo's situation at the time. People were already leaving the SNES, some jp devs based on Sega overseas success supported the system, but in Japan there was really only one choice. Starting in 1993 when companies were shopping for third party support most jumped immediately.

Western devs outside a few like Midway etc, already had little interest dealing with Nintendo since the NES.

Yeah carts was a factor, but Nintendo had already had a toxic reputation.
 
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Eddie-Griffin

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Everything about video games is digital. It's just 000111001000111.... you get the idea. So in a way every analog controller is digital in nature. But then you are missing the point.
No I'm not missing any point, you are missing the start of the discussion, which was based on the claim N64 WAS analog and saying other wise was nonsense.

Except its digital. So that's wrong.

Your poor attempt to move the posts by trying to act like there was a different argument than what actually occurred is just that, poor.
 
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Sophist

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N64 was a disaster, the few good games are not due to the platform but despite of it. Nintendo was number one but they gave the throne for free to Sony. So many iconic franchises left/avoided nintendo; Final Fantasy, Dragon Quest, Tomb Raider, Medal of Honor, Driver, Street Fighter, and so many more...
 

StateofMajora

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Nope, this is something that has always been wrong. People really dont grasp Nintendo's situation at the time. People were already leaving the SNES, some jp devs based on Sega overseas success supported the system, but in Japan there was really only one choice. Starting in 1993 when companies were shopping for third party support most jumped immediately.

Western devs outside a few like Midway etc, already had little interest dealing with Nintendo since the NES.

Yeah carts was a factor, but Nintendo had already had a toxic reputation.
You saying square would have left if they had cd? square actually started ff on n64 before jumping ship.

capcom?
 
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nkarafo

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And that's all she wrote. There's really nothing more to discuss unless you just want last word.
Alright, i'll bite.

The stick is digital (as are all the face buttons and dpad on the controller.)
Then what's the difference between the stick and the rest of the buttons? There has to be a difference because one allows for analog/wide range inputs and the others don't.

But it works. (For the most part)
How?
 

SoulTas

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No I'm not missing any point, you are missing the start of the discussion, which was based on the claim N64 WAS analog and saying other wise was nonsense.

Except its digital. So that's wrong.

Your poor attempt to move the posts by trying to act like there was a different argument than what actually occurred is just that, poor.
The start of the discussion was you dismissing N64's analog controls and disagreeing to a poster claiming it's a N64 first, because apparently it's digital, as you claim.

But you are missing the point because you obviously referring to some inner working details only patent lawyers care about (without providing any sources btw).

The point of people saying the analog stick was a N64 innovation isn't referring to it's inner workings but to how the controls work in the games.
 

nkarafo

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N64 was a disaster, the few good games are not due to the platform but despite of it.
Explain?

Pretty sure some games that are tailor made for the N64 are how they are because of the hardware and it's features.

Like, dunno, N64 was known for it's big platform games and the hardware looks perfect for them. The cartoony textures don't need to be big so the small cache doesn't get in the way. The perspective correction allows for huge, open areas without fog (which is crucial for the genre) while using much less polygons than your average PS1 game. The analog stick works perfectly for moving your character in 3D space.

The trident shaped controller also allows simulating the keyboard/mouse in FPS games. D-Pad/C-buttons for moving/strafe and analog stick for aim/turn. And use the index finger on the trigger to shoot. Just like modern controls. It's the only single stick controller that allows for such control scheme. The original PS1 controller could only allow strafe with the shoulder buttons which was already an archaic scheme.

And guess what. The best N64 games were 3D platform and FPS games. So tell me again, how N64's good games are good "despite" of it?
 

StateofMajora

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K K.N.W.

It appears my memory was a bit foggy ; all the 1996 graphics cards had less than 600 mb\s, so 64 was doing pretty well there. Could have used more bandwidth still, but now I don't know what they could have done to change that in an economically viable way.

I guess the main problem was the memory latency.

Edit : an 128 bit bus with edo memory as seen on the nvidia nv1 (which was a 64 bit bus) could have given a gig of bandwidth but i'm not sure about the cost. Or much higher clocked ddr memory but then heat's a concern.
 
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Eddie-Griffin

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The start of the discussion was you dismissing N64's analog controls and disagreeing to a poster claiming it's a N64 first, because apparently it's digital, as you claim.

But you are missing the point because you obviously referring to some inner working details only patent lawyers care about (without providing any sources btw).

The point of people saying the analog stick was a N64 innovation isn't referring to it's inner workings but to how the controls work in the games.

No either an "Analog stick" is analog or it's not. You being deceotive and trying to move the goal posts doesn't change that.

You guys constantly use these irritating poor arguments. The previous guy thought the N64 stick was not digital, it is, those are the facts. Sorry.

You don't get to make a wrong claim, then shift the post to a different argument because you're wrong and too immature to admit it.

Its the same with "well they weren't first but they did it better" crowd, it's just a bunch of insecure people making claims that are wrong, but don't want to directly admit they are wrong. Don't make dumb claims and you won't have to desperately shift the posts to avoid rightful criticism of your dumb claims
 
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Eddie-Griffin

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Alright, i'll bite.


Then what's the difference between the stick and the rest of the buttons? There has to be a difference because one allows for analog/wide range inputs and the others don't.


How?

Your oversimplifying digital while admitting before you don't know how either work. So you assume because you don't tap an arrow on the N64 stick then calling it digital would mean there's no difference.

Except you can still have a digital stick immitate analog, N64 games were built around it so it works.

The Nintendo 64 (N64), introduced in 1996, included an analog stick. The analog stick was essentially a thumb joystick. Unlike its name, the N64 analog stick was not actually analog, but digital. It had a set number of sensitivity levels, dependant on how far the joystick was displaced, which made it feel analog [8]. Most modern analog sticks use potentiometers and are actually analog.

The N64 Analog stick does not use analog potentiometers. It uses light emitting diodes and photo detectors controlled by sensor wheels. The sensor wheels are plastic hubs which produce a shutter effect allowing for an accurate direct digital read. The sensor wheels give direct correlation to the stick position compared to potentiometers which can change resistance values over time

Or case in point: how the N64's thumbstick is called "analog" when it's fully digital as much as an optical track ball or ball mouse is
 
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Kilau

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N64 uses an analog stick with digital optical input to determine position. It’s similar to an old ball mouse.
 
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That's always going to be the main weakness of the N64. Third party support.
Yes, but companies were still releasing tons of games on the SNES not too long before, Square had a FF VII prototype for this machine, etc. Third parties called it a day when they saw the format (Cartridges) they're both limited in space AND very expensive compared to disc, then sales did not materialize as much in part because of low third party support.

Third parties did not lose all interest on Nintendo paltforms "just because", heck even the Saturn had more third party support with over twice as many games available on the platform.
 

BlackTron

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Jaguars best selling games are literally 3 FPS games. AVP, Doom, Wolfenstein. (4 if you include Iron Soldier)


The N64, Gamecube, and Wii U arguably only sold above 10 million units because of bias. All due mostly to the same states in the same country.

I said that Nintendo ceded a console FPS market that they had just created. Goldeneye sold 8 million copies. AvP sold 85,000. Being a "best selling game" for Jaguar doesn't even put it in the same universe, Nintendo had indeed found an immense console FPS market that did not exist before. And it served to prove my point that Nintendo are just the masters at finding something great and then letting their competition run away with it while they sit back and don't even pay attention.

However many units 64, GCN or WiiU sold due to bias or otherwise, their sales indicate that it's unlikely that bias is wholly responsible for Switch's success due to the massive disparity. It's obvious that bias alone is not enough to create DS, Wii or Switch numbers.
 

BlackTron

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N64 architecture is a mess with the corner cutting done to get the machine out. They would need to modify the architecture for all those additions to work seemlessly, or they would end up like the Jaguar.

Even then that would only help the N64 slightly as third parties in the west outside a few had no interest in dealing with Nintendo, and now in Japan there were three other options (3DO, Sat, PS1) jp third parties didn't deal with them much either.

That's always going to be the main weakness of the N64. Third party support.

I find it incredibly presumptuous to assume that had Nintendo delivered a system with a CD drive instead of carts, it only would have helped slightly.

This has long been cited as one of their biggest mistakes of all time, and would have led to massive changes to how games were designed on it. The fact that Square moved Final Fantasy to PS over the format issue alone shows how critical this was.

I can see someone musing with some scenarios where it wouldn't have had such a large effect either way, but just confidently coming out saying it would only help slightly in the timeline we actually live in is bold.
 
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The 32X was working until SOJ killed it.

Other than the very good Star Wars it's hard to think of any decent 32X game by SOA and it became so clear with the 2nd gen software.

CD-i did memory cards and internal storage too. So did 3DO.
The CDi did memory cards? I know it did the clock and date time 1st (can't think of any game that made use of it) That's all to look over the Neo Geo AES system came out before the CDi or 3DO.
 
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Kokoro2020

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PS1, easily. Gaming wouldn't be the same today without it. First of all, we wouldn't have PS2, PS3, PS4 or PS5. We also wouldn't have franchises like Crash Bandicoot, Twisted Metal, Ratchet & Clank, God of War, Uncharted and more, many of which have been hugely influential to gaming.
 
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Innovative? N64. PS1 was still the better overall console though considering it had literally 10x more games available.
This is the one and true answer. PS1 was the better console (my kiddo self wouldn't agree back then). But in terms of innovation, the N64 shits all over the PS1. Heck, it shits all over most other consoles in console history.
 

Panajev2001a

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Your oversimplifying digital while admitting before you don't know how either work. So you assume because you don't tap an arrow on the N64 stick then calling it digital would mean there's no difference.

Except you can still have a digital stick immitate analog, N64 games were built around it so it works.
The important thing is that it has to have enough discreet levels to simulate different running speeds without the player seeing the discontinuities in acceleration and as close as 360° movement wise instead of 8 ways of movement like a DPad could deliver
 

Fafalada

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How was the PS2 completely forward-thinking when it lacked programmable shaders?
It introduced the concept of hw-accelerated programmable compute that can be used for shading, simulation and all manner of things.
From perspective of 'vertex' pipeline acceleration, PS2 design already covered the entire gamut all the way up to (and including) 'geometry engine' and 'mesh shaders'. General compute - basically everything Cuda does. While there was no way to fit pixel-shading inside rasterizer-pipeline, you could do compute based deferred shading (and GPU PSs would take until later half of the decade to offer a featureset on par with).
And for the obvious question - deferred shading came too late in the game to see use in shipped games (it'd also require scaling scene complexity closer to early gen PS2 games, so it's debatable if benefits would be worth it).

Even the Gamecube had those, certainly the Xbox did. (EDIT: Actually it wasn't programmable shaders, that's 360-era stuff. But it was something else GPU-related both Gamecube and Xbox had which PS2 completely lacked, will have to look into it again).
Their rasterizers had flexible texture combiners (in addition to Multiply/Add that standard Alpha blend pipeline offers, you could compute Dot products on XBox and do texture dependant lookups on both). Moreover their GPUs did this in registers before write-back to Frame-buffer, which kept the math at higher precision and more practically useable (PS2 and DC both could only do one operation before write-back).
But to my earlier point - the register combiner math GC supported was literally a 98-99PC GPU, just with increased number of texture reads in flight (up to 16). And even with inclusion of Vertex Shading and other enhancements on XBox - it was all very incremental steps compared to a pretty straight line you can chart from PS2 compute design.
I also mentioned N64 since that itself had DSP programmability in 3d graphics pipeline - which was also ahead of its time, performance challenges non-withstanding.

And the Dreamcast was the only console for a long time with tiled rendering (which is now a common feature in GPU designs). I think you can say PS2 was forward-thinking in some ways without completely dismissing the competition for being forward-thinking in their onw ways, and in some cases having features the PS2 lacked.
My point wasn't that PS2 didn't lack features(there were some gross omissions there), it's more that 'feature bullet points' aren't an indication of forward looking designs. PSP had a feature-list a mile long, but I consider it perhaps the most regressive PS design Sony ever made (ok it had raw-power going for it that took 5 years to exceed in mobile space, but that's ... not quite it).

PS2 didn't actually have a lot of add-on support
I can't speak for older consoles (I recall add-ons were popular in 90ies), but PS2 was the first console with a bunch of standard ports (USB, PCMCIA, Firewire), all of which had proprietary add-ons, but also accepted PC standard components. For instance, It's not particularly advertised but PS2 could use most standard USB keyboards and mice on the market out of the box (even without Linux). It also supported practically all wheel-accessories released in that decade - including PC branded ones, etc.
So I'd say - for a console it was a pretty big step at the time.

Unless you want to call peripherals like the hard drive and modem (both of which were standard with the Xbox, even the Dreamcast had a built-in modem) as add-ons
I mean - yes? XBox released 18 months later, and no console (until PS3 6 years later) was expandable with standard desktop drives. Also a console first to support USB storage devices (HDD or otherwise). The Network adapter is a bit more meh (and eventually got integrated in) - but I did say some ports did not live to their promise - PCMCIA was supposed to offer other expansions, but that never quite panned out. Can't fault a device for having standard expansions though.

Anyway, fair enough - we can call these innovations in the space, as now we're quite accustomed/expecting consoles to support open standards across the board for storage, connectivity etc. something that certainly wasn't the case before then.

It's also a bit of a stretch to say the Linux distro for PS2 made it a "fully functional PC"; you were severely limited in what programs would realistically run on it and modification the user could make, compared to an actual PC running Linux at that time. It was basically meant as an extension of Sony's Net Yazore system, not that Sony were the first to explore that type of concept either (similar software added that type of dev functionality for stock Saturn units, and systems like the PC-FX got PC GPU cards with software to allow game development).
Well it was standard open Linux environment. Yea it never got graphics drivers worth mentioning but you had full access to PS2 hardware and Sony released complete HW manuals for it, register schematics and all. Had the PS2 Slim not canned the HDD support, who knows how that community might have grown, but Sony probably had their eyes on PS3 Linux by then...
 

Shut0wen

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Err, I think you got it wrong. Its quite the opposite, playstation haves way more games, but the amount of good ones it's actually lower than the N64's.
Was just my opinion i personally enjoyed alot more games on playstation then n64 but the ng4 had some of the greatest games ever made, something all playstations dont have but n64 mostly had duds which werent nintendo games, castlevania and megaman come to mind
 
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Mischief Makers is great. I forgot about that one. That game is really good. Ganbare Goemon, i think i recall 3 of them on that system, one of which didn't interest me at all. The others, same deal as with Blast Corps. Off the top of my head.. there's nothing, and i don't care to do any googling today. I quit on the N64 for a reason all those years ago.



I would love to collect all the games i'm interested for it. But i am a poor fucker, so if i can't afford the US\PAL release (if it's 100$ or below - maaybe 150$, it's fine, if it's above nope) i resort to imports which are in most cases 1000 times cheaper and they're the next best thing for collecting purposes. A large portion of its great games are imports, so it's no problem.

If the imports are far too expensive, then i resort to reproductions. For example, here's Cotton 2: Magical Nights Dreams english patched. That shit is basically identical and looks nice on the shelf. So i will obviously get that, and not a used copy of the original import for 300$ on which i will apply the english patch. Psychic Killer Taromaru? Great game - one problem. It's 1000$. Here's the 17.99 Euro version. You're welcome.

Check this channel as well.

Hadn't taken reproductions into account, to me at least that seems like a fairly new development into the scene. But they do have the advantage of being way more affordable, as you've said, and that would make collector-me (if they were active) happy.

The main benefit I see with mods like Satiator tho is that they take the CD-ROM drive out of the equation so the worry of the drive going bad is no longer a concern. Although I guess the battery would be the bigger concern, those can be cheaply replaced. So can the CD-ROM drives in a way, but I'd rather just not deal with that fuss if able.

The 32X was working until SOJ killed it.

Not really; 32X isn't something you can necessarily pin on SoJ. Everyone in the industry already knew the Saturn was coming to Japan around the same time the 32X came out in America, and could see which of the two were going to be the long-term system. The first month or so of sales were strong but they quickly fell off similar to what would happen with the Wii U decades later.

The 32X was always a mis-planned stopgap; pushing the SVP tech into specific games a la Virtua Racing would've been better in hindsight.

Uh, CD was quickly becoming the stardard in 1992 and pretty much was the standard in 93. You just had a few titles that were behind as floppy had a large audience and it took time for that to stop being profitable.

Myst alone sold more CD drives than the PS1 did it's first two years.

Okay perhaps for PC, CDs were established as a strong alternative by the early '90s (floppies were still very prevalent tho), but for console gamers this just wasn't the case. All platforms before the PS1 and Saturn were either niche add-ons, or niche standalone consoles due to pricing (3DO) or targeting non-gaming primarily (CD-i).

There wasn't a console that made CDs as a gaming medium mainstream for console gamers until PS1 and, to a lesser extent, Saturn.

thicc_girls_are_teh_best thicc_girls_are_teh_best No I think 249 would have been the price for a cart based system with those specs.

The n64 launched at 199. With CD, probably be 300 at least with those specs.

Edit : oh i see what you’re saying now. I forgot that ps1 was also 199, so yeah a sub 300 n64 would definitely be possible even with cd.

I mean yeah, they could've gone for $249 if they were willing to sell at-cost, and probably would've chosen that strategy because of $199 PS1, but $199 PS1 was also done as reaction to the $249 N64 pricing. If 4x CD-ROM and extra 4 MB RAM were in N64 originally, would Nintendo have announced a $249 price?

That's where I have a different opinion here; they'd of probably gone at least $299. That might've prevented Sony and Sega from lowering their prices in return.

CD was dirt cheap in 96. Consumers could get sturdy featured 4x drives for $150, a company with connections buying in bulk would get much cheaper prices per drive. Like $60-70. $30 for 3x drives.

So maybe 3x CD-ROM drive for an N64 at that time, then, because $60 is a lot of the BOM to have eaten up by just a disc drive.
 

Trimesh

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The important thing is that it has to have enough discreet levels to simulate different running speeds without the player seeing the discontinuities in acceleration and as close as 360° movement wise instead of 8 ways of movement like a DPad could deliver

The whole argument is, IMO, rather stupid - both of these controllers output their stick positions as 8-bit digital values, so if you want to be balls-achingly precise they are both digital proportional systems rather than "analog". The implementation detail that one uses a purely digital system with a quadrature encoder and a position counter and the other has an inch or two of actual analog signal between the pot and the ADC is exactly that, an implementation detail.
 

BlackTron

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PS1, easily. Gaming wouldn't be the same today without it. First of all, we wouldn't have PS2, PS3, PS4 or PS5. We also wouldn't have franchises like Crash Bandicoot, Twisted Metal, Ratchet & Clank, God of War, Uncharted and more, many of which have been hugely influential to gaming.

I don't understand how the existence of a console's successors has anything to do with how innovative it was.

Without Gamecube, we wouldn't have Wii, which disrupted the market with its innovative hardware, and software like Wii Sports. Therefore, Gamecube is more innovative than PS2.

Sorry, it just doesn't work. 🤷‍♂️
 

polybius80

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How was the PS2 completely forward-thinking when it lacked programmable shaders?
it had the VU to run "vertex shading programs" that is why it could do lot of vertex operations like moving around vertex in models such as characters and cars and ways to program the shading of pixels using the vector units and other components specially with redrawing that is why you have lot of effects that require pixel shader programs on a machine "without programmable shaders"




you can see similar and other effects in other games suchas hitman, malice, area51, valkyrie profile: silmeria and others
 
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Being a massive NES /SNES fan, I was disappointed in the N64 apart from a couple of great games. Never liked the controller either.

The first PlayStation to me had elements that should of the been the SNES successor (of course we have the history of the SNES CD).
 
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It introduced the concept of hw-accelerated programmable compute that can be used for shading, simulation and all manner of things.
From perspective of 'vertex' pipeline acceleration, PS2 design already covered the entire gamut all the way up to (and including) 'geometry engine' and 'mesh shaders'. General compute - basically everything Cuda does. While there was no way to fit pixel-shading inside rasterizer-pipeline, you could do compute based deferred shading (and GPU PSs would take until later half of the decade to offer a featureset on par with).
And for the obvious question - deferred shading came too late in the game to see use in shipped games (it'd also require scaling scene complexity closer to early gen PS2 games, so it's debatable if benefits would be worth it).

Sorry I meant to state tiled rendering, not programmable shaders. Nonetheless I appreciate the detailing specified here on the latter.

Their rasterizers had flexible texture combiners (in addition to Multiply/Add that standard Alpha blend pipeline offers, you could compute Dot products on XBox and do texture dependant lookups on both). Moreover their GPUs did this in registers before write-back to Frame-buffer, which kept the math at higher precision and more practically useable (PS2 and DC both could only do one operation before write-back).
But to my earlier point - the register combiner math GC supported was literally a 98-99PC GPU, just with increased number of texture reads in flight (up to 16). And even with inclusion of Vertex Shading and other enhancements on XBox - it was all very incremental steps compared to a pretty straight line you can chart from PS2 compute design.
I also mentioned N64 since that itself had DSP programmability in 3d graphics pipeline - which was also ahead of its time, performance challenges non-withstanding.

Also interesting, there's a lot on the CPU/GPU archs for some of the older systems I plan on re-reading on although I've done some reading in the past and seen some very good videos more recently on such. On the topic of N64's DSP programmability, that's actually not unique to N64 that gen, the Saturn had a custom DSP of its own that handled data going between the CPUs and VDPs so data could be modified on the DSP on the way to either or both VDPs.

However, like I'd assume with the N64's case the Saturn's DSP was very complex and even some people who know the system very well like the ex-Traveller's Tales programmer note that not all the chip's functions are clearly defined in the documentation and had some surprises, let alone the complexity of utilizing it within the 3D pipeline. But if this is more a discussion on just the feature in and of itself being very ahead of its time for a console of that generation, and not who had it first or something like that, then I agree with the general idea that it was pretty innovative for a home console (even if arcade systems were doing it for years by that point, different gaming sector tho TBF).

My point wasn't that PS2 didn't lack features(there were some gross omissions there), it's more that 'feature bullet points' aren't an indication of forward looking designs. PSP had a feature-list a mile long, but I consider it perhaps the most regressive PS design Sony ever made (ok it had raw-power going for it that took 5 years to exceed in mobile space, but that's ... not quite it).

I can agree with that notion. Ideally you want something that can hit both and the PS2 for the time for certain devs probably veered too hard into utilizing hardware features and concepts that weren't really friendly for devs of the era. Granted, they had the market presence and share for devs to make peace and work with it regardless, and it led to some great visual treats.

I can't speak for older consoles (I recall add-ons were popular in 90ies), but PS2 was the first console with a bunch of standard ports (USB, PCMCIA, Firewire), all of which had proprietary add-ons, but also accepted PC standard components. For instance, It's not particularly advertised but PS2 could use most standard USB keyboards and mice on the market out of the box (even without Linux). It also supported practically all wheel-accessories released in that decade - including PC branded ones, etc.
So I'd say - for a console it was a pretty big step at the time.

That might actually have been the case, to be fair. It's not something that can necessarily be held against pre-PS2 consoles tho as a choice on their part born from arrogance or ignorance (for the people who end up taking it that way, not you specifically). The truth tho being that PC standards were, well, a lot less standardized even with consoles like Dreamcast were being completed in their design phased and put out to the market, let alone consoles earlier than that.

I'd argue only a sliver of PS2 players actually made use of PS2's ports for non-specialized (or gaming-branded, PS2-branded) peripherals tho...that said that has no bearing on the inclusion of the feature itself or what it allowed on a technical level.

I mean - yes? XBox released 18 months later, and no console (until PS3 6 years later) was expandable with standard desktop drives. Also a console first to support USB storage devices (HDD or otherwise). The Network adapter is a bit more meh (and eventually got integrated in) - but I did say some ports did not live to their promise - PCMCIA was supposed to offer other expansions, but that never quite panned out. Can't fault a device for having standard expansions though.

Right, completely right on the fact systems like Xbox benefited from their time of release on having certain hardware features a platform like PS2 just couldn't of had, but the same has to be applied to the PS2 having things like standard USB ports and PCMCIA when platforms like Dreamcast, or especially N64 (tho really, Nintendo wouldn't allow that type of interfacing anyway), PS1 etc. lacked such support.

Well it was standard open Linux environment. Yea it never got graphics drivers worth mentioning but you had full access to PS2 hardware and Sony released complete HW manuals for it, register schematics and all. Had the PS2 Slim not canned the HDD support, who knows how that community might have grown, but Sony probably had their eyes on PS3 Linux by then...

And they gimped Linux on PS3 anyway by limiting GPU access to it (and then just stripping Linux support away altogether :messenger_angry: ).

it had the VU to run "vertex shading programs" that is why it could do lot of vertex operations like moving around vertex in models such as characters and cars and ways to program the shading of pixels using the vector units and other components specially with redrawing that is why you have lot of effects that require pixel shader programs on a machine "without programmable shaders"




you can see similar and other effects in other games suchas hitman, malice, area51, valkyrie profile: silmeria and others

That's interesting, some of what's in the footage there looks better than what it would've looked like on a CRT on real hardware back in the day for sure but I guess that just goes to show how poor it was on Sony to skimp on video output options for PS2 :/.
 

Sophist

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I’m not saying no support would jump ship to playstation if 64 had cd, but the famous losses like square enix were huge snd definitely because of carts.

With cd, third party support would be hugely better either way. A lot of devs just didn’t put their games on 64 because of the price of carts.

In the end, as a gamer that plays all machines, it worked out best that nintendo had carts because of the games that came out of that decision. N64 would have been inferior with cd, just with more 3rd party.

My biggest gripe with the 64 is the lack of a sound chip and that combined with carts really gave ps1 an advantage.
Some wanted to comeback to nintendo when the 64DD was announced. For example, it is little known but Capcom actually started developing Ominusha for the 64DD. Same for Enix and Dragon Quest 7.
 

PuppetMaster

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Gonna say Playstation simply because of the Dual Shock. That is the controller that changed console gaming due to standardizing dual analog sticks.

N64 had some nice games. But that controller was bad and is just a footnote for the history books.

While the impact of the Dual Shock design is still with us today. And likely will continue to endure for even longer.
 
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polybius80

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That's interesting, some of what's in the footage there looks better than what it would've looked like on a CRT on real hardware back in the day for sure but I guess that just goes to show how poor it was on Sony to skimp on video output options for PS2 :/.

I had the game back in the day and it looks as good as the video on a crt why wouldnt?, I still have CRT TV's as I pick and repair them as electronics practice and tested some games not long ago, in my case even better as I played in 480p using the xploder Hd disc, IIRC I later played it on a LCD back then in 16:9 and progressive , the xbox I think had progressive support but 4:3 only and PS2 had 16:9 but interlaced but with xploder its possible to play most games in progressive, there are modes for bigger resolution options but never tried them

you can look for yourself, there are ton of videos of people playing on CRT


Hitman blood money is also a game with similar effects
 
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Eddie-Griffin

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Yes, but companies were still releasing tons of games on the SNES not too long before,

When you ignore context you make posts like this SNES had support mainly by Japanese devs because it became clear over there it was the only money making option outside risking overseas success on the mega drive. But before that was clear they were leaving in drives to NEC and a bit toward SEGA.

I said that Nintendo ceded a console FPS market that they had just created. Goldeneye sold 8 million copies. AvP sold 85,000. Being a "best selling game" for Jaguar doesn't even put it in the same universe,

An outlier FPS selling over 8 mill on the N64 doesn't mean they had the FPS Market. No real FPS players were on the N64 or the PS1, some core ones did go to the Jaguar, a small amount but it wasn't a fad flash like GE that couldn't be replicated. The closest was another FPS by the same studio and that was due to the fans of said company, not any "FPS market".

There was nothing for Nintendo to cede.

However your overall point of Nintendo sitting on the side, or in addition, alienating audiences, was true, but nothing new honestly.

However many units 64, GCN or WiiU sold due to bias or otherwise, their sales indicate that it's unlikely that bias is wholly responsible for Switch's success due to the massive disparity. It's obvious that bias alone is not enough to create DS, Wii or Switch numbers.
I was talking about Wii and Switch, I was talking about N64, Gamecube, and Wii U.

I find it incredibly presumptuous to assume that had Nintendo delivered a system with a CD drive instead of carts, it only would have helped slightly.

This has long been cited as one of their biggest mistakes of all time,

And a lot of other pieces of gaming history that are false have also been commonly cited. So "been cited" is pointless unless there's actually something behind it that's credible, and pretending carts were primarily why N64 lost third party support is as stupid as believing Pacman 2600 crashed the industry yet it kept making money and being brought and is the best selling title on the system.

Final Fantasy VII was also a sponsored game by Sony in Japan, that still would have happened because a ton of jp devs wanted better deals and relationships.

And even the 3DO and Saturn, once Sega partially finally found a small temporary opening in japan, got game devsthat all ran from Nintendo.

Some of these deals were before people found out what storage was being used.

Nintendo's toxic relationship with third parties is well known and ignoring that is silly, just to pretend carts were a bigger issue than they were.

In both US and Japan Sega had a very short, or short temp lead respectively over PS1, but skipping deals, more third parties ran to Sony because of the environment and better relationships. Nintendo was 10x worse than Sega to many devs. It's just how it is.

No CD was going to help the N64 but a little bit. Being 2 years late with a corner cut system that alienated a ton of 2D devs didn't help either.

Even 3DO stole a bunch of devs from Sega and Nintendo in the early years as SNES was coasting and Sega was panicking over slowing sales.

The pattern is 100% consistent.

That's still not even mentioning western devs, which wouldn't touch Nintendo in most cases outside a handful of companies.

N64 as it is was only saved by a fan community in one country along with a new generation of children growing up gaming in same said country, it barely budged in any other region. CD isn't going to do much for it anywhere. US? Nope. Europe? Slightly. Japan? It would have less library interest than the Saturn.

Granted N64 almost caught Saturn in Japan but that's because SoJ was winding things down in 97 and basically killed it early for the DC. But CD wouldn't have done N64 much better.

Do you know how fast developers ran to NEC in japan from NES. NEC literally said, here's a new console, here's how we want to market it, we need devs, no other info, and everyone basically ran at the speed of lite until self inflicted wounds made devs shift to the SNES eventually years later. Excluding the devs locked in contracts of course.
 

Eddie-Griffin

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Not really; 32X isn't something you can necessarily pin on SoJ. Everyone in the industry already knew the Saturn was coming to Japan around the same time the 32X came out in America, and could see which of the two were going to be the long-term system. The first month or so of sales were strong but they quickly fell off similar to what would happen with the Wii U decades later.

The 32X was always a mis-planned stopgap; pushing the SVP tech into specific games a la Virtua Racing would've been better in hindsight.

No, SOJ killed marketing and support, the 32X was supposed to keep the Genesis moving and was a fast selling add on until that happened. Projections of two million or three in less than 2 years was expected, and the current LTD backs this up which was high in such a short time.

It was made to respond to the Jaguar and was wrecking it. By 96 I see 2.5-3 million easily with support. The consumers clearly wanted it. It was in a few more months going to match or exceed the Sega CD which sold 1.5 million in 5 years, in UNDER two years.

It sold through irrc ~575k the year it came out alone, almost ~900k altogether. They killed it really fast.

Okay perhaps for PC, CDs were established as a strong alternative by the early '90s (floppies were still very prevalent tho), but for console gamers this just wasn't the case. All platforms before the PS1 and Saturn were either niche add-ons, or niche standalone consoles due to pricing (3DO) or targeting non-gaming primarily (CD-i).

3DO established it as a new standard, instrumental in causing 3D tech and CD drive prices to drop for consoles. CD-i drives was more costly than CD) and while 2 million may not have been relatively mainstream that got a lot of devs to prefer it jumping right to the PS1 (and to lesser extend Saturn) CD was always going to be the future.

The Jaguar made the mistake of launching a cart system without the proper funding. They had some hit games but couldn't mass produce the software and get them into stores due to cost. The stuff people complain about for N64 was already known and established nearly 3 years earlier.

Several later systems switched to CD from earlier prototypes real fast.

So maybe 3x CD-ROM drive for an N64 at that time, then, because $60 is a lot of the BOM to have eaten up by just a disc drive.
Nope, CD drives changed over time, had certain features, and differing build quality.

A regular standard stable 4X drive that had nothing special was $30 per unit for bulk buying.

A premium feature one was $60, Nintendo wouldn't need the former. If you want to gut some of the N64s capabilities.

Of course you have to consider what kind of CD Drive Nintendo would NEED.

N64 has features and capabilities that take advantage of the connection between the console and the cart (and also the Expansion pack in some cases), and of course there are often things in a ROM cart itself that help with these.

A standard CD drive would bring in more bottlenecks, impacting what the N64 could do and what hardware tricks it could use.

Unless you got those more complex 6x-12x drives that at minimum would likely cost Nintendo $90+ per unit in a bulk buyout to make it on time for a 1996 launch.

In this case you would be looking at potentially a $329 N64. When the competition was $199 or less during holiday sales.

But if you use a cheaper standard drive then you have additional bottlenecks making the system inefficient.

This same thing applies to those who wonder if the Jaguar should have launched with a CD. While like N64, Jaguar has architectural bottlenecks (more so) both it and the N64 were designed with the carts in mind to push certain capabilities and tricks that would help with game development and execution.

Both consoles would have to be redesigned for a CD drive to be effective or very costly if using a featured premium drive.

People keep looking at this as "slap a CD drive on an N64 or Jaguar" instead of thinking "how does the console architecture work with the carts?".

Very important difference.
 

Eddie-Griffin

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Gonna say Playstation simply because of the Dual Shock. That is the controller that changed console gaming due to standardizing dual analog sticks.

N64 had some nice games. But that controller was bad and is just a footnote for the history books.

While the impact of the Dual Shock design is still with us today. And likely will continue to endure for even longer.

On the controller, but in use that credit would likely go to Xbox since most PS games barely used the second stick until then with few exceptions. Especially right for camera which became fully standardized.